Here's How Caregivers of Disabled Veterans Can Get Time Off

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The Elizabeth Dole Foundation is partnering with the Department of Veterans Affairs and CareLinx in-home care professionals to offer free respite care to caregivers of disabled veterans.

The Respite Relief for Military and Veteran Caregivers program gives caregivers 24 hours of respite care from a CareLinx professional to help with bathing, companionship, cooking, exercising, grooming, light housekeeping, medical and medication reminders, mobility assistance, transportation and other activities. If you and your care recipient need more assistance, such as help with administering medications, in-home physical therapy, or any other type of specialized medical care, you will not be eligible for this service at this time.

The 24 hours of service can be used over the course of a few days, a week or a couple of months, but must be used in allotments of at least four hours, however it must be used before the end of the year. Currently, the program is available only in certain areas of California, Florida and Texas, but there are plans to expand it to more areas before year's end.

Made possible by a donation of $1 million from CareLinx, a professional caregiver marketplace, connecting trusted and licensed caregivers with families in need of home care services, the program will provide more than 40,000 hours of non-medical home care for more than 1,600 caregivers and their wounded, ill or injured service members.

"Caregivers charged with caring for our nation's veterans face new challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic," said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. "They have become increasingly isolated and are hindered from getting reliable, outside help. This program provides caregivers compassionate and needed relief during this stressful time."

To submit an application for the program, visit the Elizabeth Dole Foundation at hiddenheroes.org.

The foundation is the preeminent organization empowering, supporting and honoring our nation's military caregivers -- the spouses, parents, family members and friends who care for America's wounded, ill or injured veterans.

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